Conquest of a continent: or, The expansion of races in American
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- Ethnology--United States, Ethnology--America, Anglo-Saxon race, Teutonic race, Citizenship--United States.
- New York, London,: C. Scribner's sons
- 2011-07-22 19:28:49
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Subject: Who is Madison Grant, the man who wrote this book?
I offer the wiki as a key to understanding the man who wrote this book, and why it creates such avid and non-objective reviews by those who read it.
Wiki, like Internet Archive, is a source for knowledge, and it's good to know why some people think the way they do.
Subject: What are you speaking about
Within said galaxic volume locally cerebrally considered, it is alsocerebrally speakable that a so-called planetary-astral continental form must first have selfformed; this: to possibly be said to be conquered by said forms of largeSexual and phenotypic-genotypic placental mammals. By those who in no casecan reproduce sexually by said exchange of atomic-molecular cell formsblood. We say
Subject: Really nothing more than wishful Nordic agrandizement in attempt to elevate race status at the expense of other civilizations...
Boring and tired reading geared toward a specific mindset and spectrum.
Subject: A Classic! A Must Read!
"Most conservatives of the present era would shun him..."
F*ck those impotent cuckservatives. Nobody with balls cares what they think. These cucks couldn't shine Madison Grant's shoes.
"The character of a country depends upon the racial character of the men and women who dominate it."
No truer words have ever been spoken. It was true in Madison Grant's day and just as true today.
P.S. Pardon my Yiddish.
Subject: Madison Grant's Conquest--or the Tribulations of Race Conservation from Grant to Putnam
Most conservatives of the present era would shun him and even use the term "progressive" as an epithet for the left. Yet he is a conservative both as an aristocrat in the truest sense whether in terms of physical appearance (visible in his photo as a an undeniable representative of the race he extolled), social class, and pedigree (prominent old-stock American), as well as in his pessimistic feelings about the world around him. By all accounts, he was not so isolated in his hauteur that he could not travel widely or participate in urban politics (actively supporting the winning candidate in the New York City mayoralty election of 1897).
Despite the outpouring of work on this individual and this his nearly final statement--readied for the publisher only a few years before his passing--there is always room for more exploration in this world of thought. Moreover, in later decades more attention has been focused on The Passing , so that John R. Baker, the scholarly biologist, seems unaware of Conquest in his massive study, Race (1974). Now that the 21st century is well underway, there is a great need to work within the context of Grant's own time and to see what lines of descent (whether or not direct) he cast down into our own day, or at least the later 20th century. Further, though he offered a racial history of the United States, he had devoted considerable space to our "neighbors to the south" and some attention to the world scene as of the early 1930's. These aspects of Conquest, in particular, need further attention.
The essential thesis of the book: “Never before in the History of the Nordic Race had there been an event comparable in importance to the occupation of North America, north of the Rio Grande, by the English and Scotch, with a few outside elements entirely in sympathy with its dominant tone, in possession of the most salubrious continent in the world beyond question.” The United States is the greatest repository of the Nordic branch of the white race and, by concerted national policy, must maintain this precious cargo. As it had been in the beginning and remained throughout the first third of the 20th century, America was a great homeland of the Nordic race, but its continuity as a predominantly Nordic nation faced perils, some of which had been overcome, while others gathered, lurking in its very
Grant as he had in The Passing of the Great Race, writing in the midst of the First World War (then known as "The Great War"), offered an anthropological history of this preeminent race, starting with the emergence of the Nordic as a highly specialized type in prehistoric times. Grant narrates the movement of this type (which he at the outset divides into "continental" and more fully developed "Scandinavian" variant) as it subdued the European continent, establishing the Graeco-Roman civilization of antiquity, and later, through the conquests of further Nordic waves, bringing about a new constellation of monarchies, empires, and nation states in Europe. Then, Nordic man moved outward in a wave of expansion beyond the European landmass through exploration and, ultimately, outright colonization of the rest of the world, to include North American continent. The subduing of this continent Grant extols as the greatest achievement of Nordic humanity. A toned down summary of Grant's purpose was provided by his admiring collaborator, Osborn, in one of his prefaces to the earlier Passing:
“...[C]onservation of that race which has given us the true spirit of Americanism is not a matter either of racial pride or of racial prejudice; it is a matter of love of country, of a true sentiment which is based upon knowledge and the lessons of history rather than upon the sentimentalism which is fostered by ignorance.”
Why the Nordic?
Grant's niche is in a well-developed line of anthropologists, publicists, and political writers of the 19th century who detected race as the building block of civilization or the Nordic type (though different names might be used) as the prime mover in the great uplift of humanity. Of particular importance in the oft repeated names cited from this heritage, to wit, the Frenchmen Arthur de Gobineau and Georges Vacher de Lapouge or the Anglo-German, Houston S. Chamberlain, one is particularly important: the anthropologist Vacher de Lapouge. In his studies on the role of the Aryan (read "Nordic" for Grant) in history, the questionable place of the Alpine race, and the negative impact of the Jews, Vacher de Lapouge is the most important and probably most direct influence on Grant, with whom he corresponded and whose Passing he translated into French, but it is very plausible that Grant strove to partially conceal his reliance on this Frenchman's findings, whether these insights were conveyed to Grant via personal correspondence or set down in print.
As Grant related in both his earlier work and Conquest, the Nordic is the aristocrat among the white races, the main groups designated as Nordics, Alpines, and Mediterraneans. The categories of whites are the focus of his writings although the development of all greater racial subdivisions ("browns, yellows, blacks") from a far-distant homeland in Eurasia is discussed (Grant expressing skepticism that there is one truly common human species). "Race" is not succinctly clarified in terms of chains of categories linking his white branches together or in descending order, and Grant admitted that "race is hard to define." However, he detected a particular "race" by the "presence of a collection of hereditary characters common to the great majority of individuals in a particular group." There is a danger of tautology here, since the nature of "group" is unclear.
For the most part, Grant assumes that readers understood that one positive scientific indicator of racial membership was the cephalic (or cranial) index. As a contemporary source (Information Please) clarifies for the layman: "Expressed as a percental number...[t]he index is obtained by dividing the maximum width of the cranium by its maximum length and multiplying by 100....A cephalic index of 80 or more is called brachycephalic or broad [a characteristic of the Alpines]; a measurement between 75 and 80 is mesaticephalic [or mesocephalic: intermediate racially]; below 75 is considered dolichocephalic or long [possessed by both Nordics and Mediterraneans]." As these measurements depict the top of the head, or are based on a line obtained by boring through skulls of the deceased, there can be some confusion in the popular mind since some individuals may have a roundish or square face, but a long head. Later, with respect to length or height of the face as seen from the front, Carlton Stevens Coon found that facial height in the Mediterranean is based on the height of the upper part of the face, while in the Nordic facial height is based on the height of the lower part of the face (including a relatively large chin area).
The determination of the cephalic ratio in individuals, both living and dead, was a prime object of physical anthropology in making a determination of which European type dominated--with additional differentiation based on pigmentation of skin, hair, and eyes. In the late 20th century, skull index determination, though continuing in use for the diagnosis of deforming illnesses, was greatly displaced by chromosomal analysis of bodily liquids or of trace elements from the bones, teeth, hair, etc., of the deceased.
Tall with fine features from head to toe, and with great musculature, the celebrated blond hair blond sometimes subjected to darkening or shading into brown or dark brown (never raven black we are assured), the Nordic race (or, frequently, "type") shares some affinities in overall appearance with the Mediterraneans, who in their pure state are long headed, fine featured, but generally dark. Grant insists that the Nordic is not simply a de-pigmented Mediterranean, even if in some instances the hair or eyes were dark--but immediately after Grant, Carleton Coon would make essentially that very contradictory point in his The Races of Europe (1939), discussed below.
Despite his eulogy of the Nordic as the essential nucleus of civilizations and nations, and his endeavor to distinguish this summit of mankind from the Mediterranean, Grant has positive things to say of the Mediterranean in the area of the arts and architecture in the world of ancient Crete, Egypt, and points east. The Mediterranean is not without ability and talent, but is not possessed of the drive and stamina of the Nordic. In contrast, when remarking on the Alpine race, Grant (not Osborn in the introduction) is often very critical. Though the Alpine skull is distinct from that of a round-headed Mongol, the former developed in close proximity to the latter in Asia, and frequently intermixed with it. The Nordic, after forays against civilizations of the Mongolian type dominating the area to its east, withdrew or was pushed towards the west, towards the European peninsula. The Alpine, sometimes light, sometimes dark, Grant would maintain, detracted from the unity of the American experience.
To this typology of Nordic-Alpine-Mediterranean branches of the greater white race, very familiar to most readers worldwide by the early 20th century, Grant occasionally added the "Dinaric" (used by William Z. Ripley) a tall, round skulled racial type, but long-faced, and admitted that this type could be seen in England. The role of other rounder-skull races that were taller than the more European mainland Alpine (such as the "Borreby" race noted by Coon in northern Europe and also found in the British isles) was played down in this racial narrative of American history. In fact, the palette used by Grant for painting his racial canvass is rather limited, and would be augmented by the Harvard Anthropologist Earnest Hooton whose writing was partly contemporary with his student at Harvard, Coon. Hooton depicted several racial types pertaining to the Old World, most of which had migrated to North and South America. Relevant to the earlier population of the United States were the following racial types, one a compound and one equated with a linguistic group:
PURE NORDIC. Long-headed, ash blond or golden hair, pure blue or pure gray eyes. Old Wor1d habitat: Britain, Scandinavia.
NORDIC-MEDITERRANEAN. Long-headed with light eyes and dark hair or dark eyes and fair hair. Old World habitat: British Isles.
PREDOMINANTLY NORDIC. Not quite the pure Nordic. Old World habitat: Britain, Scandinavia.
KELTIC. Long-headed, red or reddish hair with blue eyes, or dark hair with blue eyes. Old World habitat: Southern Ireland.
Grant held the view, later restated by Coon in 1939, that the Nordics were carriers of the Indo-European or Aryan languages both into Europe and into the Indian subcontinent. These languages, at one time linked in an ancestral language that was "flexible and adaptable" (per the introduction by Osborn), became the languages spoken by all Europeans whose speech falls within in the Romance, Teutonic, Celtic families and, to the east , the languages of the Slavs, and farther away, those spoken in Persia/Iran and Afghanistan, and much of India. Grant did not therefore call the Nordic an "Aryan" as did Vacher de Lapouge or necessarily equate Nordic features with an Aryan type as the Nazis were already doing. "Aryan" in the contemporary era, he insisted, referred to a linguistic group spoken by mixtures of peoples , both white and nonwhite, as well as those who might be entirely Nordic, Alpine, and Mediterranean. In their more pure states, before Nordic conquests extended to the south and west of Europe, Grant linked the Alpine with a Turkish type of language (ancestral "Turki"), the Mediterranean with Semitic and Hamitic speech, the latter even extending into parts of the British isles, just as the Nordic is associated with Aryan/Indo-European speech.
The Great Nordic Conquest
In a painstaking, but overly tedious review of the occupation of what became the North American Union, Grant moves colony by colony, state by state, region by region, to emphasize that whether Puritan, Anglican, or Calvinist, English, Scotch, or Irish (until the 1840s), this immigration, settlement, and further movement to the west of the continent, initially out of land hunger, later to evade debts brought on by financial panics, or to escape from later waves of incomers, or, in the case of the Mormons, to found a new land, involved persons of Nordic heritage and appearance. Thus, the so-called Irish in the early settlement and development of America were not even "Scots-Irish" (a misnomer) but "Ulster Scotch"; other "Irish" were really English settlers from Ireland's east coast. Grant here, as in the earlier Passing, reemphasizes that, certain pockets aside, most of the British Isles is Nordic: "Britain and Ireland constitute a group, the membership of which is overwhelmingly Nordic in its racial inheritance."
The Nordic as the American "Staatsvolk"
The Nordic, of all European races, personified American nationality, the axis around which the remainder revolved. Whatever its source, primarily from England originally, or an occasional Huguenot from Northern France or Belgium, or a larger group of Scandinavians, the Nordic made the United States the dynamic nation it was. The "Anglo-Saxons," a designation Grant would use interchangeably with the largely British-derived Nordics, were the people embodying the state--to use a phrase from Kurt Glazer, the Staatsvolk. Patriotism predominates in his account although a summary of the nature of American achievements, aside from those of a political nature, and a description of the distinctiveness of the land of his roots are lacking. That America became the industrial nation, par excellence, is not necessarily a happy outcome for Grant, as will be seen. What was fortuitous, from the perspective of successive generations, was Grant's finding that despite pockets of Alpine Germans and even the encroaching southern Irish, as late as 1860, America had changed little since 1790--the date of the first census. Based upon the data of national origins as was available, the United States for 70 years started out and remained a Nordic nation. "It is probably accurate to say there never has been a nation which was so completely and definitely Protestant as well as Nordic as was the United States just after the American revolution."
A Dubious Victory and Early Backwaters
Flight of the Loyalists
Grant, from his racial perspective cannot view the American Revolution as an unalloyed blessing. It did open the frontier of the early West to the White-Nordic colonists, but there was a major loss in the flight of the loyalists. Some of the best blood went to Canada or the West Indies. In the latter, these fine Nordics were swallowed up in the growing slave population or were forced to flee after the abolition of slavery in the British Empire. But in our neighbor to the North, they contributed to a wiser westward expansion--more ordered and respective of the land.
The Germans settlers arriving in colonial America, and settling in Pennsylvania and adjacent colonies created outposts of the Alpine race, and were a often dubious element. Germantown, Pennsylvania, established in 1673 was "the first outpost of the Alpine race in America." This is where, even in his own time, Grant may have erred. If one meets non-Amish "Pennsylvania Dutch," one often notices a distinct Mediterranean coloration, probably with dolichocephaly. These traits may indicate that the Palatinate, a major source of colonial settlement, probably had some survival elements from this portion of ancient German lands that fell under Roman control and to an earlier immigration from within their empire. Equally, Grant had little to say about the very Nordic character of the Amish, for example, in eastern Pennsylvania, but scoffed at them for holding to their archaic German. One deficiency in Grant, based on possibilities for political analysis in his own day, is his lack of respect for a less centralized nationalism contrary to political Progressivism that would not stand in the way of local distinctions that expressed cherished traditions of people who had taken up roots and did not care to move on and conquer.
At least implicitly for Grant, and obviously to the reader, racial inheritance may not be sufficient for a positive contribution to the task of subduing a continent. The genuine Irish of Roman Catholic faith, who only came over in large numbers as a result of the 1840's potato famine, and then settled down in large cities, preferring to avoid the agricultural life that caused them so much grief were unlike both the initial and some later waves of immigrants (particularly Scandinavians) that met with Grant's favor. Their possession of the English language, rather than aiding the development of the United States simply made them, early on, the eloquent and capable organizers of block voting under the development of the party system. This system and the Irish role in it, Grant abhorred as it led to generations of anti-English agitation for votes--"the twisting of the lion's tail"--that poisoned ("envenomed") relations between the British Empire and the United States, whose collaboration was vital for Nordic survival. Though mostly Nordic, the Irish included some Mediterraneans and vestigial primitive white types from the western portion of the Island. They were also wards of the Roman Church, which, with its extensive school system, was an anomaly in the progressive and overwhelmingly Protestant nation that championed the public school. There is no doubt that Grant equates Nordic with Protestant and was, in fact, sympathetic to the Know-Nothings and related movements in America that attempted to close off the immigration of Catholics.
Grant had relatively little to say about the anthropological origins and development of the Negro race that would prepare the reader for the general hostility he displays in the book. At the outset, he contends that the coloration of Mediterraneans has Negro origins, and describes the southern Italians as having some Negroid component in their makeup. There is more attention placed on the mulatto class of the early nation, and he is at pains to deny that there is any notable mixture coming from the masters; rather, mulattoes are the offspring of the lower depths of early white society and black slaves and servants. That the "master class" did not particularly contribute to the creation of mulattoes and more diluted mixtures was a thesis questioned in Grant's own time and the reported liaison between Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemmings had very early sources in the 19th century, although the third President never publicly responded to such reports. Further, that the legendary former director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, J. Edgar Hoover, and a black woman from Mississippi may have shared a slave ancestor bids some skepticism about Grant's position, as does the fact that, in recent times, Strom Thurmond's surviving daughter springs from his relationship with an African-American. That there were African bed-warmers for white slave owners is highly likely, even if the range of Black-White (that is Nordic) crossings in earlier American history involved different social strata. Grant subsequently concedes that, overall, about one-third of Negroes in the United States have some white blood.
Concerning slavery, he is sympathetic neither to the Southern fire-eaters of secession nor to the Northern "sentimentalists" who took up the cause of abolition. He holds that the institution of slavery, a legacy of antiquity, would have died out in competition with
the industrialized north. However, he favors the movement to restrict it from new territories, as slavery as an institution tainted and stigmatized manual labor in the minds of free people and discouraged the settlement of free Nordic whites. Though sympathetic with Southern whites in the 20th century, Grant does not favor Southern over-representation based on slave populations or, subsequently, essentially empty ("emptied") ballots of Negroes no longer voting. The solution he proposes later in the book is a radical one.
In his review of the triumphant Nordic and the presence of Negroes and Mulattoes, Grant's conception of an overwhelming Nordic population is indeed anomalous or at least very misleading. It is clear that the proportion of Blacks to Whites in general was much higher at this time then it would be during the great era of foreign immigration after the Civil War that Grant opposes. Undoubtedly, it was this great wave of immigration that played a major role steadily reduced the Negro proportion of the U.S. population through 1930 (after European immigration was sharply reduced) from its high point of one-fifth in the nation's first census of 1790.
Nordics were not without their flaws, particularly in their gutting of the natural environment in their quest for land and in their general avarice. There were even criminal elements by inheritance. Thus Grant labelled the so-called "white trash" element of the South as the purest of Nordics. The problem was inbreeding in isolation (often in a less bracing climate), not the basic racial stock. This contradicts his tendency to find in the mulatto a product of the lowest whites and blacks rather than the offspring of the slave owners themselves. For when such unions occurred, were the white partners as yet sufficiently isolated to have degenerated? Further, he avoids any determination of the percentage of this "trash" element in the population of particular States post-Civil War or into the 20th century.
Amerindians and Pre Columbians
Grant displays little imagination in what was a fertile field of speculation about origins of the builders of the mounds still found at various points in the South, Midwest, and Great Lakes area. In his own day, the "mound builders" were thought to be of a race other than North Amerindian, and it is interesting that Grant, leading member of the American Geographical Society, did not want to explore any connection to a pre- Northman Caucasoid or Nordic that may have been displaced by the Amerindians or mixed with them. Finding that Indians, prior to their migration through the Bering land-bridge to the New World, may have had some white admixture--possibly Alpine-- he nevertheless had little to say about the Cherokees or other members of the Five Civilized Tribes whose Daguerreotypes suggest strong admixture with whites. Here was an opportunity to disclose whether or not this mixture traced backed to antiquity.
Instead Grant finds that the overriding characteristic of the indigenous peoples whom the Nordic colonists and settlers of the 17th and 18th centuries met was their innate savagery toward captives--unspeakable barbarism that was greater even than that of the ancient Assyrians, who were noted for their cruelty. Consequently mixture with Amerindians in the colonial period brings forth his contempt: "Half breed" always rightly had bad connotations among Americans. It is noteworthy that the closing lines of the Declaration of Independence confirmed this fear of the " merciless Indian savages whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions. " The only positive esteem for the mixed breed in early America was Virginia's "grotesque" exaltation of Pocohantas and her offspring. Only a lack of racial dignity on the part of some colonial French in North America (and countenanced by Church of Rome) could create such mixtures. It was fortuitous, then, that the Amerindians succumbed, for the most part, in their competition for existence with the land-hungry Nordic.
Conquest Not a Racial Edition of a U.S. "Heritage" Magazine
Grant's panorama of a Nordic subjugation of America would have greatly benefited from a series of photographs or plates depicting distinguished Americans of Nordic cast. A key indicator, of course, are the individuals who have served as Presidents of the United States. If one glances at the portraits of American presidents, most from the early period would fall within the Nordic category, with some possible exceptions. John Adams appears rather round-faced, if his dolichocephaly is undetermined; Jefferson, with his large chin area and reddish hair is undoubtedly a Nordic, while Martin van Buren seems to be a frumpy round-faced and possibly round-headed individual. His predecessor, Andrew Jackson, was a Nordic's Nordic. Are the elegant, dark features of Franklin Pierce "Nordic," but exemplifying darkening, or was he a genuine Nordic-Mediterranean? Grant conceded there had been such mixtures in the British Isles--and that they were one of the few instances of positive amalgamation. Or what of those less ceramic facial traits of Abraham Lincoln or Lyndon Baines Johnson, both have whom had dark hair? Grover Cleveland and Theodore Roosevelt may have mixed brachycephaly with some Nordicism. Woodrow Wilson was as Nordic as Jackson, but with a certain English refinement in his countenance. For darkness, with Alpine traits, Richard Milhous Nixon must be the personification of what Grant thought was an original Alpine element in our earlier history, and he would have speculated that it stemmed from the Franco-German maternal Milhous side. His face, while long, is very bean-shaped and the curly hair and eyes, even skin tone, quite dark; the nose rather wide in maturity.
Although it would be fair to say that most unmixed white Presidents of the United States are Nordic or northern European in some sense, with departures in hair color, there is ambiguity here, and possible contradiction among other political leaders. Tom Paine, the prime agitator of the revolution, undoubtedly falls into the round-skulled or Dinaric elements, which Grant admitted were in the British Isles. The legendary Daniel Webster was known as "black Dan" based on his hair, eyes, and complexion as a younger man, while he might well be brachycephalic. Stephen A. Douglas, Lincoln's opponent in debates for a Senate seat from Illinois and in the presidential campaigns of 1860, despite very blue eyes (based on an oil portrait), had many Alpine traits, such as wavy dark hair and a wide nose. He was known as "the little giant"--as short as Lincoln was tall.
The Dangerous "Newer Immigration"
Starting after the Civil War, immigration became more problematic, owing to two categories--the hyphenates and the aliens, arriving in far larger numbers due to the expansion of the American railroad infrastructure and industrial base after the war. The "hyphenates" (following the phraseology of Theodore Roosevelt or Henry Cabot Lodge) were here earlier--the Germans and the Irish--but their numbers now increased, along with their tendency to form separate institutions devoted to their own culture--such as the Catholic Church-sponsored school system heavily patronized by the Irish and the societies specially devoted to the German language and music. Of the latter, Grant wrote: "This tendency toward hyphenization has made the Germans a less valuable element in the American population up to the present time than they should have been." His colleague, Massachusetts politician and later Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, had described "the hyphenates" as far back as 1888 in language cautiously incorporating his own compatriots:
“Let every man honor and love the land of his birth and the race from which he springs and keep their memory green. It is a pious and honorable duty. But let us have done with British-Americans and Irish-Americans and German-Americans, and so on, and all be Americans...If a man is going to be an American at all let him be so without any qualifying adjectives; and if he is going to be something else, let him drop the word American from his personal description.”
The aliens were the purer Alpines, Mediterraneans, and Mediterranean-Alpine crosses of Southern, Southeastern, and Eastern Europe. Some of these, distant in appearance from founding Nordic stock, were also tainted by criminal tendencies or were even emptied from the jails of Europe to ease the burden of their presence there. Southern Italians were composed preponderantly of the Mediterranean and its mixtures with the Alpine that were antipodal to the Staatsvolk Nordic, but Grant praised the Northern Italians as being a lighter blend of Alpines and Nordic invaders (Goths, Lombards) of the "boot" who, upon arrival in the New World, settled away from the east coast to be apart from the "Southerner." Some of them, the "big fellows," worked in the mines of Minnesota, while others had become active in the expansion of San Francisco and its environs. That there is lightness in many Sicilians and Southern Italians is a proposition not meeting with any great interest on the part of Grant later in his narrative; in fact, he seemed to have forgotten his opening comments that the Nordic race was not averse to going south of Rome or into the Italian islands.
A major problem for Grant's anthropological narrative is his equation of the Nordic with agricultural life, and the less desirable or even undesirable whites of the great new wave with industrial development. But if this growth was part of the greatness of post-civil war America , and if Nordics were not capable of working in tedious industrial jobs, railroad building, or in the urban "sweatshops" of the textile manufacturers while the others were, then the work of some of the hyphenates and outright aliens was needed--even indispensable so that Nordics could be free to pursue their true interests. Grant was unable to develop an economic corollary for his dynamic theory of conquest and settlement in rural areas, but he conceded that more was needed; referring to the decline of farm life in Iowa he wrote: "One of the real problems of statesmanship in the near future is to work out a social and economic system under which a large part of the old native stock, and particularly the most intelligent portion of it, can live under the favorable biological conditions of the small village." If a prime characteristic of capitalism is its development in the context growing populations, possibly domestic but often sourced from immigration, Grant the Progressive conservationist had an opportunity to be more specific in the pages of Conquest.
Among these newer post-twilight immigrants of an alien type were the Jews, particularly from Poland. While the earlier Sephardic Jews, those genuinely originating in Iberia, represented a "superior" and truly Mediterranean element (he had stated as much in Passing), the new Jews were of a type that Grant clearly disliked and thought dangerous to national harmony. At this point, Grant introduces the "Khazar theory" of Polish-Eastern European Jewry, known to Oswald Spengler and other European writers. He doubted "there was a drop of the old Palestinian Semitic-speaking Hebrew blood among these Eastern European Jews." In this passage Grant breathed some life into this theory, which has bubbled to the surface over the generations in the writings John Beaty, Alfred M. Lilienthal, and Arthur Koestler. The nationalist-right activist Benjamin H. Freedman was also a strong proponent of "Khazar" origins of the Ostjuden in the 1940's and '50's, as were Arab activist endeavoring to show that Jewish claimants to a Zionist homeland had no roots in the area. This Jewry, largely Alpine rather than Mediterranean from the standpoint of physical anthropology, was of the same basic composition as the German Jews, but undoubtedly observing intra-Jewish tensions in the New York of his own day, he found that all was not well between the latter and the larger wave of Polish Jews: "Polish Jews are much despised socially by the true German Jews."
It has been proposed by contemporary sympathizers or extenuators of Grant's overall views that his references to Jews are relatively scattered; he has more extensive criticisms of the Church of Rome. But as Grant was writing, Jewish sensitivities were growing in the wake of the advent of Hitler and some rapport between the Germans and their eastern cousins had already been building since the "Leo Frank case" and Frank's lynching by prominent whites which took place when Grant was preparing The Passing of the Great Race: Grant was by now their common enemy. He worked to bar the door to Eastern-European Jews with his assistance in the preparation of the highly restrictive immigration legislation of 1924. Further, he had detested the growing role of the cultural/environmentalist anthropologists at Columbia University (led by Franz Boas, a German Jew) and hinted at this enmity in passages updating the Passing:
"Those engaged in social uplift and in revolutionary movements are therefore usually very intolerant of the limitations imposed by heredity. Discussion of these limitations is also most offensive to the advocates of the obliteration, under the guise of internationalism, of all existing distinctions based on nationality, language, race, religion and class. Those individuals who have neither country, nor flag, nor language, nor class, nor even surnames of their own and who can only acquire them by gift or assumption, very naturally decry and sneer at the value of these attributes of the higher types.
Abroad, conditions are fully as bad, and we have the authority of one of the most eminent anthropologists in France [Vacher de Lapouge?] that the collection of anthropological measurements and data among French recruits at the outbreak of the Great War was prevented by Jewish influence, which aimed to suppress any suggestion of racial differentiation in France."
Halting the Flood of the New Immigrants
As noted, Grant wrote benignly of the earlier immigration-restriction movements in American history, often aimed at reducing Catholic influence in America, noting the strength of the "Know-Nothings" during America's middle period. The conflict over the expansion of slavery into the territories disrupted this semi-secret organization, but similar ones arose after the Civil War. In the ensuing decades these forces were augmented by organized labor seeking to maintain its standard of living against those willing to work for less, and by the eugenicists, the newer proponents of scientific racial hygiene, as well as prominent economists such as Francis Amasa Walker. Walker had proposed his law with respect to the deleterious impact of immigration on the population already in-place, specifically, that the "fecundity of a group is cut down by the competition of immigrants, who take away births of the initial group." Grant could not affirm that this proposition was totally accurate, but, he wrote that as "a general tendency [it] seems near truth."
With the waning influence of President Woodrow Wilson, who had vetoed restrictionist legislation, a series of Federal limitations were imposed during the 1920s. In particular, Grant liked the absolute maximum of 150,000 immigrants placed in the 1924 National Origins Act, which parceled out this small total of entrance-seekers according to the portion of their fellow nationals in the overall population mix of 1920. This was the most scientific approach (not mentioning his own role in its formulation) and one that reduced to a small stream the alien component of the "new immigration" that had gone on for half a century. Among its positive results was the checking of the "tumultuous and frantic invasion“ of the Polish Jews. In no way contravening Grant's views, it completely barred the entrance of Japanese, Chinese (already banned), and other Asians. In one passage, he lauds the 1924 legislation as America's "second declaration of independence."
But there were problems even with this, because a new status quo was now in place, despite national origins restrictions. The Nordic White population, while still definitely in command in all the leading fields of the military, science, industry, and the House and Senate, had declined from an early of high 90 percent to about 70 percent as Grant wrote of his own time. It could still take concerted action in critical areas, among them correcting flaws in the immigration laws then in place. Grant pointed out that in order to facilitate Canadian immigration, while not offending the racially mixed and Non-white populations of the New World, there was no draw-down on the inflow from the Western Hemisphere. This left the door wide opened to the Amerindians of Mexico, and, while most Canadians newcomers were Nordic-English, the less desirable French Canadian element was free to enter; and these Catholics Grant found to be"the most highly inbred of any large group" of Old World origin.
The continued arrival of the Mexicans posed ever ponderous burdens on the economy and society. The Mexican influx disrupts "a healthy and prosperous farm population--which American civilization largely depends on." This source of cheap stoop labor was exceedingly torpid, as well: On intelligence testing for abstract intelligence "the average Mexican child was as below the average American Negro, as the later was below the average White American." Grant was therefore inclined to propose a total cut-off in immigration to the United States, with perhaps a few exceptions of for people of proven worth and culture who could make positive contributions. He would also stop naturalization for a generation. Thus the Nordic race would be left to its own devices to proliferate without newcomers, even masses of similar inheritance, and no offense would be given to sensitive Asiatics, and the other races of the world.
The Good, Bad, and the Ugly of the Art-Deco Age
The South remained an area of maximum preservation of the "Nordic Anglo-Saxon race" despite pockets of immigration
in New Orleans, North Carolina, and Atlanta. West Virginia, in particular, stood as an area of the "purest Anglo-Saxon" stock.
Grant nevertheless drew back from returning to the problem of in-breeding among such pure Nordics, jovially ascribed to West Virginians, or to the significant health problems that it may have produced. Perhaps not present as extensively in Grant's day, the pronounced tendency toward obesity among young white women, many not even 19, in the Appalachian Piedmont and valley area strikes the visitor immediately, and is a portent of catastrophe in terms of mortality and maintenance of the the entire American health system in the 21st century.
The Mid-West contained the best and the worst. Indiana, as was true earlier in The Passing, remained dear to Grant's heart.
Here was a state that continued to be the most Nordic and Anglo-Saxon by background. The Hoosiers deserved "recognition for the way they have preserved their language." And the Indiana school of writers " has long sounded the authentic note in American literature"--which contrasted with the "decadent tone" of Atlantic Coast writers. But which authors were these? Grant may assume his readers would be familiar with James Whitcomb Riley, Booth Tarkington, and Meredith Nicholson. But Theodore Dreiser, a leader of the naturalist school and from Indiana, was of German background; as was the later Kurt Vonnegut author of the fantastically imaginative surrealist work, Slaughterhouse Five. Even Riley was quarter-German in heritage. Moreover, it is difficult to believe that the Baltimore "German" (and blue-eyed Alpine) Henry L. Mencken, definitely rooted on the Atlantic side of the states, had views that differed very much from Grant when he lifted his mask from time to time. His American Language was already a classic in Grant's day, and sought to defend the American style of the mother tongue as it developed in the New World.
Illinois, in contrast embodied the worst of the America remade by alien immigration. It was a state where the Alpines and Mediterraneans outnumbered the Nordics, who were below a million and were leaving the state. The scandals of Illinois politics where its alien-type population predominated were now known to most newspaper readers. Further, Negroes were part of the corrupt politics of Chicago. Other states seemed better, depending on whether their newer immigrants complemented the older "Anglo-Saxons" with
additional Nordic blood. Michigan had lost about half of its native stock, but much of the remainder was a better type of newer immigrant, to include the Northern Italian. Minnesota had become increasingly Scandinavian, while Wisconsin was still Germanic, but this Germanism had to compete increasingly with a Slavic influx. Grant found that the State had largely escaped the Negro migration to the North. There is no doubt that the Teutonic and Scandinavian strain in the two states was markedly present into the 1980s, when the observant traveler would notice the tow-headed children from the bus passing through the various small towns and where the cleanliness of the restrooms in fast-food restaurants contrasted very favorable with the sights encountered back east.
The West, the Mexicans and other Spanish-speakers aside, was an amalgam of the rest of the American population from the remainder of the United States that sought to escape the Civil War, earn employment in the mines--even a quick fortune--or with the Mormons, to leave the Gentiles behind. Grant continued to be favorable to the Latter Day Saints, noting that their strong Nordic population (some of which was born in England or Scandinavia before converting to the new faith) had a high birth rate and seemed destined to over spread the area--as it was already doing with colonies in neighboring states such as Idaho and Arizona. New Mexico was an anomalous state, which had Spanish as a second-language and an interpreter for Spanish speakers in its legislature. This retention of official bilingualism for the benefit of its Mexican-Indian inhabitants would "sooner or later" have to be terminated if the state were to advance. While the Mexican population had been widely reported on in press coverage of California, and Grant himself had been critical of it, he emphasized that the white influx there was of the "purest Nordic stock," and under the economic decline of Depression, many Mexicans had returned to their homeland. From the standpoint of the 21st century, it is striking to see these upbeat remarks about California, where Grant found, further, that the Chinese and population was declining and the Japanese leveling off as a result of a long agitation for exclusion on the state level and, ultimately, prohibition through Federal law. Also interesting is to read of Washington State, which has voted majorities for every Democratic candidate since 1988, being characterized by Grant in 1933 as "entitled to claim that it is one of the most Nordic of the States."
New England had seen a complete reversal of fortune, its native population virtually lost in the influx of the non-Nordics, being reduced to about one-third of the region's population. The Anglo-Saxons, already suffering from a low birth rate, had been forced out through displacement rather than simple enticement, as in earlier times, by the lure of greater opportunities elsewhere. In parallel fashion, the Middle Atlantic states, from New York through New Jersey and Pennsylvania had seen the old Nordic population reduced to a minority. Overall, the "northern and central parts of the Atlantic Coast...have become the worst un-American parts of the Union." What Grant termed the South-Atlantic States--Maryland and Delaware--were still "native" despite the arrival of foreigners including Germans, Russians (many Jewish), Italians, and British (apparently new-comers). However, these states were of declining importance in furnishing Nordics to the rest of the nation. While not represented at that time, the District of Columbia had no large foreign element (an observation rather erroneous for the 1930's, as it was oblivious to the strong Irish, Italian, and Jewish elements), but Grant found the Negroes, who numbered more than a quarter of the population, were "nowhere more aggressive." That Washingtonians were denied the right to vote sprang from the fear in Congress that control of the city would pass to this Negro block and servile White trucklers.
The Modern Negro
Grant's antecedents must been Northern Republicans, and it is clear that from a number of passages that Grant wished to see
the influence of the South reduced to its proper place in the American legislative system. Undoubtedly, this would be a formula to advance the Republican Party. But as a racially minded Progressive Republican, he comes close to the extremist Southern viewpoint of the early decades of the 20th century and is almost totally hostile to the presence of the Negro in America. One exceptional statement is that Negroes are "cheerful," but are best handled by the people that know them. Otherwise, he is built for sustenance in a different climate, and has difficulty fitting into a "modern Nordic industrial civilization."
His antipathy especially targets the mulatto, whom he sees as no intermediary between the Black community in general and American Whites, but a growing problem due to mixtures primarily in the North (the contemporary South too segregated by law). These mixtures even extended to Jews and others in New York City. Mulatto lightness, perpetuated as a cult, was a dangerous combustible because it instilled a lust for white blood on the part of purer blacks. What, then, to do? Grant weighs a number of solutions, one of which would be to end Negro franchise altogether. This would also end the over-estimation of the South's population for representation that had given the region its congressional advantages since advent of the Republic under the Constitution.
Could the Negro disappear from America? The race could melt away via further amalgamation that had created the mulatto, thereby increasing the White blood in the Negro to a proportion high enough to end the color visibility; but that was impossible because it would mean white absorption of a black inheritance and, along with mixing with other races, a racial chaos. Deportation Grant weighed more seriously. He had in mind cooperation with Marcus Garvey's nationalist movement popular among purer Negroes that would return the African to his homeland. But there were major obstacles: The African continent was controlled by white nations that would not want more blacks coming in and, further, Garvey's reputed support in the black community might not be that great. More evidence of its actual popularity was needed.
Aside from the repealing the 15th Amendment that gave former slaves the right to vote, Grant proposes to extend legal segregation to the North, ending the mulatto cult--and the social mixing that could produce mixed breeds--and terminating any formal unions by banning black-white marriages by statute. If there were no deportation, the Negro population could perhaps be diminished by increasing the availability of birth control measures. Actually, even at that time, there seems no basis to conceive of such measures getting anywhere in the States of the American North without coupling them with rapid deportation at great cost--unless one were prepared for the urban rioting and warfare of the type that erupted a little more than a generation later or an even greater conflagration.
Grant admitted that he was offering a "counsel of perfection" that would include not merely the Negroes, but the less desirable native-stock Americans and the undesirable dark Alpine-Mediterraneans with which the United States was irretrievably saddled. There was room for work on the eugenics and immigration fronts: Extending the sterilization of the criminal and unfit of all backgrounds would build on the practices of 27 States then in force in America. Eugenics measures replaced nature's uncaring elimination of both fit and unfit through "indiscriminate destruction" with a beneficent scientific suppression of the genuinely undesirable. Undoubtedly, in Grant, the Progressive movement had reached its apotheosis. Right and Left fused: State control for human quality ("qualism" uber.
Grant was not finished: He would supplement the enacted immigration restrictions with a compulsory out-flow by deporting criminals not yet naturalized and, further, deporting unemployed aliens. He would end the status of a "legal" alien completely, at least for a period, by suspending naturalization, perhaps filling the country with "tourists." He would return to the Federal law of 1790 and limit citizenship to whites only.
A narrative limited only to the United States of America would not be compatible with an anthropological overview of a people not yet evolving in full isolation; while Conquest had traced American-Canadian relations intermittently throughout the text, he also offered a view of "Our Neighbors to the South" which supplemented his comments on the annexation of Texas and the aftermath of the war with Mexico. Of the latter, Grant had written that there was "[l]ittle justification for a declaration of war in 1846 on technical grounds, but it was one of the most important and most beneficial acts ever to be taken by an American government." The war ensured the retention of Texas and gave the United States most of its far West and Pacific coastline. Sufficient Lebensraum for Nordic migration, but not too much for retention of Mexicans. That Polk did not get all he wanted in the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was a blessing--especially dangerous would have been U.S. possession of Baja California. Grant does call for a modification of the southern frontier that would settle a glitch in the Gadsden Purchase that denied the Southwest an outlet to the Gulf of California (Sea of Cortez). To obtain this long-lost opportunity, a shrewd bargain that would trade U.S. possessions in the West Indies that were of no racial value to a Nordic nation was in order.
The critical difference between the United States and countries of Latin America was the basic fact that the Spanish conquerors did not bring their wives (or bring potential spouses soon enough), creating an inevitable mixture with the Amerindians around them. Most of the southern neighbors were Spanish in name only. Mexico, in particular, with possibly only 3 percent of its population genuinely white European, was a case of "Spanish civilization being absorbed by the Indian....” In this remark, as in others where he comments on culture, Grant reveals that he not particularly well versed in the field and maybe less well traveled than he should have been. His paths through the world appear to have been "main traveled roads." He studied crime statistics, read census reports, and earnestly perused the anthropological journals of the day, but cared little about music. While Mexican art aroused attention because of the murals of Diego Rivera, Orozco, and Siqueiros depicting the Indian masses, its musical folklore, whether or not in mariachi format, is generally very European--infinitely more so than the music of the eastern Balkans. One can only think of its waltz tempos, polkas, and fine bel canto singers, popular with Mexicans of all shades. Most of Mexican music is infinitely more familiar to the ear of a Grantian Nordic American than that of the eastern Balkans or Andalusian Flamenco. A racially hybrid country may maintain the music of its conquerors, discard it altogether, or create fascinating blends (some of the music of Ecuador or Peru, for example).
Parenthetically, it is worthwhile to note here that the proposition that Grant had no feeling for music and its creation by non-Nordics or Nordic-Mediterranean blends is further substantiated by his failure to express any appreciation of what Italian composers and opera singers were creating throughout his lifetime. Only recently had the unequaled Neapolitan tenor, the stocky and dark Alpine Enrico Caruso passed away. Although Puccini, Respighi, and Leoncavallo were on the commanding heights of music in Grant's day, he says nothing about their musical output or their group membership--although his observations with respect to the latter would be of interest:
Leoncavallo probably a Mediterranean, Puccini a pigmented Nordic, and Respighi an Alpine.
His view of the Americans south of the Rio Grande or Key West rose or fell with the percentage of white blood (preferably at least partially Nordic) that could be determined in particular nations. But he did preface his country-by-country report with with praise for racially proud families that preserved white heritage and and "groups of far-seeing intellectuals" who argued as he did for eugenics measures to weed out anti-social elements and for wise immigration measures--in this case to increase the Nordic or, at best, European proportion of the population. Thus Costa Rica, composed primarily of light Spanish Galicians, was comparatively enlightened; the three Guiana's useless; Venezuela, with much Negro admixture, an unimportant country. But Uruguay was strikingly white (with many lighter Alpine-Nordic crossings from Northern Italy) and by resorting to a policy of promoting further white immigration, could set an example for all of the Latin nations. The "ABC" powers of Argentina, Brazil, and Chile, were long seen as the leaders of the region, and Grant, even in the case of Brazil, is usually positive. Though Brazil was largely Negro in its North, immigration could be its "salvation", if this largest of South American nations could increase the right kind of immigration from Europe (already concentrated in its southern states); for the moment its intellectuals and politicians were thinking in terms of population uplift and eugenic cleansing. A wise counsel for Argentina, as well, would be fewer "Alpine" newcomers and more Nordics.
On the doorsteps of the United States were Puerto Rico and Cuba, the former referred to as a territory rather than Commonwealth at the time, whose inhabitants were U.S. citizens after the war with Spain a little more than three decades prior. In large part because the inhabitants were chiefly Negroes and mulattoes, the United States, Grant wrote, "made a mistake in taking over territories that were already populated by aliens." (In finding that they had received negligible immigration for a long period, he seems unaware of an influx of Portuguese and Corsicans and others from Europe [not strictly Mediterraneans] who had arrived to develop the island's agriculture and coffee plantations; such immigration being encouraged from 1815 onward by the Spanish Crown's Royal Decree of Graces [Real Cédula de Gracias] promoting the immigration of European Catholics, not only from Spain, into its Caribbean colonies.) In any case, as citizens, they were free to enter the U.S. mainland. Thus, it was high time to encourage Puerto Rico's independence. With respect to Cuba, it was fortunate indeed that that amalgam of Negroes and Mediterraneans was not annexed; it had no population of importance to the United States--a judgment that neglected those relatively light Spanish and European whites that he found meritorious in other southern neighbors. This was the element, in its first wave slightly more than a generation later, that would flock to Florida to escape the imposition of communism.
The Contradictions of Foreign Policy "a la Kipling"
A question hangs over the whole of Conquest: Can the Nordic be tamed and just settle down? Often times, the stated ideal for America is the Nordic as farmer; no mere tiller of the soil, but owner of his own land. An "Indiana" on a vast transcontinental scale, sealed off as much as scientifically possible from admixture with the lower orders, foreign and domestic. But a "Conquest" means conquerors who cannot stay still. The Nordic is a fighter and explorer; the purposeful roamer who builds nations and empires. The Nordic has a martial soul and volunteers for wars. Most recently the Great War brought Nordic youth to the front from the New World to fight on behalf of maternal Britain. In contrast, the Alpine French Canadians declined to join the ranks with characteristic excuses and evasions: they would neither fight for Britain, their ancient enemy; nor for France, the "atheist" republic; nor even for Belgium, which Grant judges to be as "clerical" as Quebec.
However much Grant favors genetic isolationism for the United States and referred only sarcastically to the liberal League of Nations, he proved to be a racial internationalist. England, long the target of the venal Irish-Americans, was the natural ally for the United States in forming a Nordic union for peace that other chiefly Nordic nations might join. These two great English-speaking nations would be the nucleus in policing the vast colonial world that then still flourished. America had to lend a hand in taking up the white man's burden, for Britain, drained by the recent war, "is an aging Titan." Emerging as the great challenger for control of these possessions in the Pacific was the new heir to the old Mongol rivals of the Nordic race on its eastern flank: Japan. The Japanese, among the victors of 1918, stared down at the rest of the Pacific not yet in their hands. The "Eastern Front " of antiquity had reemerged as a new "Western Front" on
the far side of the America's west coast.
The Philippines were among the ripe plums. "If Japan ever gets hold of these islands, she will keep them without regard
to the wishes or interests of the natives, as that Empire is not greatly troubled with sentimentalists and native sympathizers."
In his discourse on the United States, Grant is emphatic for exclusion of Filipinos seeking to immigrate. As they did not come with their own women, Nordic-derived females on the West Coast could fall prey to the natural, lustful desires of these men. Independence for the archipelago would then be in America's best interest. But at the end, Grant has second thoughts. Independent, the Philippines would be in Japan's sights. As an alternative, then, the United States might more firmly govern the islands. New administrators, new soldiers, new settlers from the Nordic colossus of North America? But could these Nordics find the Filipinas as attractive as Filipino men found the white American women? Undoubtedly they would, and a whole new class of hybrids would be created. Not something that Grant strenuously indicates that he wants.
While Japan in its early Showa era loomed as the danger confronting Anglo-American civilization, Grant had nothing to say about the emerging star of National Socialist Germany under Hitler (the Nordic-Alpine-Dinaric from the Austro-German border), an admirer of Grant and a racist-eugenicist , or the well-established regime of Benito Mussolini (the dark Alpine or Alpine-Mediterranean blend). Clearly, Grant did not think things through in preparing his final summation. But his emphasis on Anglo-American cooperation brings forth images of Winston Churchill's History of the English Speaking Peoples, who publicly expressed his belief in the American-British special relationship and whose actual views were at times not so different from Grant's. Intriguing too is the foreshadowing of the "Pacific (or Asia) First" emphasis of General Douglas MacArthur and the early post World War II right in the United States.
Passing away in 1937, Hitler's "quiet year" but Japan's first year of full-scale war in mainland China, Grant could never comment on the second great conflict in the making and its consequences. In a sense his departure was premature; at least another decade was needed to put together his reflections on the new world that awaited.
At a transition point, just two years after Grant's passing, and at the outset of the fateful year, 1939, a large work by the American professional anthropologist Carleton Stevens Coon (cited above) was published. The Races of Europe was meant to update William Z. Ripley, the foremost anthropologist of his day, and one whose typology Grant had used. Not so easy, at first, to understand for readers not trained in anthropology, the book includes numerous plates depicting the racial variations that are the subject of book, either directly, or at its periphery. Where Coon is intriguing is his attempt to buttress the thesis that the Nordic is a de-pigmented Mediterranean, and that this race has affinities not to just the muscular types that had the stamina for the conquests of which Grant wrote, but to various slender Mediterraneans. Further, he produced illustrations to show that there were Mediterranean types of substantial height with large oval faces. Consequently, Coon prefers to view the colonization of the New World (both hemispheres) as the work of Mediterraneans in both their original and bleached forms. However, he does refer to the United States of 1939 as a vast Nordic reservoir, and agrees at this point in his career that the Nordic was the bearer of Aryan or Indo-European languages.
Describing the origins and development of Jewry, Coon, buttressing his views with photographic plates, shows that many Eastern-European Jews had retained a Palestinian-Semitic appearance. He notes that this Eastern Jewry developing in more recent historical times also included long separated elements from ancient Hellenic and Turkic-controlled areas such as Khazaria. However, he avoids stating outright that they are Khazars or even mixtures with Khazars. Somewhat parallel to Grant he finds that many Jews have become brachycephalized, and here and there Jews are full Alpines. Although Jews from any particular region reflect continuity rather than contrast, he concedes what today are called "trace elements" that Jews probably picked up in the domains of the Roman Empire at its greatest expanse; thus he shows Jews of Nordic facial type, and finds that Polish Jews do not look Slavic but do exhibit features possibly acquired in the the Franco-German border area prior to their exodus to the Polish-Lithuanian empire. There is also a quality of looking Jewish; but Coon sees this as more psychological or cultural in inspiration and finds that some Jews within "a Jewish morphological range" do not have this look.
The realities, intellectual, cultural, and political, of the world emerging out of the wreckage of the Second World War, were replete with everything Grant despised and opposed: the dissolution of the Nordic colonial empires; the growing success of the Negro civil rights movement; the ultimate overturning of the immigration quota system that had favored countries with strong Nordic populations; the erosion and termination of eugenics policies aimed at the criminally "immature"; and the ballooning prestige of environmentalist and cultural anthropology. But this world was often a gloss on a glowing chaos whose fires burst though from time to time, and there was much of a somber character in America. A cold war with Soviet Russia started even before the actual hostilities were over, accompanied by a new Red Scare that was something of a "payback" to the Communist and left intellectuals of the 1930's and 40's.
Though in a minority, numerous individuals who thought in terms of distinctions, whether invidious or not, between racial (or ethnic) groups, attracted attention, brief prominence, or a certain notoriety in particular eddies of tension. From the 1950's through the early 1970s, John Beaty (theme: Khazar domination of the northern Democratic Party); Carleton Putnam (emphasis: maintenance of racially separated schools at the very least, citing data and findings provided by various physical anthropologists and other academics); Nathaniel Weyl (innate Negro disabilities; superior intellect of Jews; need to expand the stock of the gifted, particularly of white background); Revilo Oliver (nationalist right orator, publicist, and academic blending conspiracism with many Grantian-eugenicist emphases); and Wilmot Robertson (actual name: Humphrey Ireland)--definer of a dominant Nordic-Alpine American Majority race--are among the very numerous academic authors or publicists who could be mentioned.
It is Carleton Putnam who resembles Grant most closely from the standpoint of lineage, social milieu, and practical achievement in the postwar era, particularly the during the years of opposition in the South to the gradual dismantling of racially separate public school systems in accordance with the Supreme Court ruling in Brown vs. the Board of Education. What held the nation in its grip in those years was a dispute over the merits of the generalized categories of blacks and whites, not the internecine fighting among the white racial pantheon. Putnam, a blue-blooded Northerner with roots in colonial America, was a relative of the publisher of the same surname and a major figure in the development of the airline industry during the 20th century, ultimately serving as the chief executive officer of Delta Airlines. In the manner of Grant, he was a Northern man with Southern principles (if the South until the late 20th century could be seen as the one remaining region that defended the concept of race differences). What is particularly significant is that Putnam had commenced what was planned as a multi-volume biography of Theodore Roosevelt whom he admired and whom Grant knew personally. He looked back nostalgically to the Progressive era of his youth when there was a sense of honor and pride in heritage. As evidenced in Grant and Roosevelt, it was a time when an interest in "reform" was not antithetical to Nordicism or an intellectual defense of race differences. But Putnam would abandon completion of this project to became a man of ideas in the struggle against mass racial integration in the United States.
Putnam gained national attention with an "Open Letter to President Eisenhower" criticizing the impact of the Brown decision and the Administration's decision to enforce it in critical instances. In the wake of the events following use of paratroopers to integrate a high school in Little Rock, Arkansas, Putnam penned his letter to make the case for continued school segregation in the South. One portion, as cited in a paper by John P. Jackson Jr., stated: “Any man with two eyes in his head can observe a Negro settlement in the Congo, can study the pure-blooded African in his native habitat as he exists when left on his own resources, can compare this settlement with London or Paris, and can draw his own conclusions regarding relative levels of character and intelligence – or that combination of character and intelligence which is civilization.” As the Jackson study relates, this open letter had a highly favorable reaction in the Southern press and shortly thereafter "a 'Putnam Letters Committee' was formed to collect donations to sponsor reprinting" in newspapers South and North.
His first book, Race and Reason (1961), set forth the basic style of reflections interspersed with questions and answers (really rebuttals to various criticisms of the race-differences viewpoint, literal or plausible) that appear later in his Race and Reality (1967). The latter book is superior to the former in that it could site the findings or compilations of Carleton Coon--actually a cousin-- and a number of academics still active after 1945 in the fields of anthropology and psychology. What is clear from a study of Race and Reality are the departures from Grant that reflect the new postwar context and corresponding changes in the intellectual world. Grant, with his Lapougian disdain for the Alpine, is put aside as are most other intra-White differences highlighted in prior decades--particularly during the fight over mass immigration from Europe. With the Church a bastion of anti-Communism, the battle against Catholicism, very much alive for Grant, is muted very considerably; only some critical comments on the timidity of a Catholic anthropologist, Fr. C. J. Connolly, are aired: "Father Connolly, mindful of the equalitarian climate of his time and his position as a Catholic, is always guarded in his statements, which are full of qualifications."
With Jews, Putnam does take more issue on an intellectual level as they are active in the propagation of environmentalism and racial egalitarianism. Jews have sided preponderantly against the race-difference theories out of adherence to left-liberal ideology and the fight against social exclusion directed against Jews earlier in the 20th century. A bete noire remains Franz Boas, and many of the those joining him as disciples such as Ashley Montagu (born Israel Ehrenberg), Otto Klineberg, Melville Herskovits, and Gene Weltfish. They have ready access to media attention and publicity because of a parallel set of background motives among the members of the Fourth Estate (though no names are mentioned here). Plausibly he might foreshadow Humphrey Ireland in The Dispossessed Majority or Kevin MacDonald's depiction of an in-bred Jewish "culture of critique" as a generally anti-Jewish white nationalist movement was emerging in the late 20th century, but never goes that far, and there are references to non-Jewish opponents of inherited race difference (inter alia, Ruth Benedict, Margaret Mead, and Theodosius Dobzhansky). Further, Putnam cites Weyl and Dr. Ernest van den Haag, of Jewish heritage, as helpful references in his battle of ideas, and in his Open Letter to Eisenhower he had referred to America's Christian and Jewish roots. Elsewhere in Race and Reality he states that Jews are not a race but a white sub-stock the physical traits of which he does not discuss.
He rarely uses "Nordic" in his terminology, preferring "Whites" or "Caucasians," and, overall, favors the culture they produce-- with particular preference for the role of the Anglo-American sub-stock of Whites to create the most advanced systems of self-government. He presents a quote from Theodore Roosevelt defining this sub-stock as essentially the founders of Roosevelt's New York: Anglo-Saxon mixed with Dutch. With respect to his own political viewpoint, Putnam clearly lacks the nationalist unitarianism of Grant. Despite his nostalgia for the days of TR, he is no dyed-in-the-wool Progressive, but a conservative constitutionalist favoring the dispersal of the power of the State. He sees the "Negro problem" as varying throughout the country in terms of the numbers of Blacks and the degree of admixture with Whites. Different states and localities would have different policies. There can be no single blue-print dictated from a centralized authority in the Federal government.
Looking at international developments, particularly, bad experiences in decolonization, Putnam advocates an organization of leading Western nations that would virtually supersede the United Nations (leaving the latter as a debating society between East and West). This organization, in a way reminiscent of Grant's Anglo-American league of Nordic nations, would assume a mandate of responsibility for order in the old colonies, particularly in Africa, and protect white immigration and investment there.
Putnam, taking rather a rather unique position in the postwar America, is critical of the 1960's right and the Republicans in a manner that shows he is uninterested, even opposed to a free-market agenda as primary. Looking about at the prosperity of the decade, and its vigorous middle class, he finds the intellectual and ideological leaders of the American right quixotically pushing the economics agenda of old-fashioned sweat-shop exploitation. Others are hopelessly enmeshed in conspiracism, while the regular Republicans not in this mold have only a mild dilution of Liberal statism to offer. What would be the really "hot" topic was the one with which the White man in the street is preoccupied--the race issue. Average whites want what Putnam has openly advocated, that is, avoidance of social mixing that would lead to the black-white hybridization that he fears as inimical to a civilized society. He stresses the dangers of mixing in integrated school systems, but does not go so far as to be preoccupied with the minutiae of separation. Blacks and whites sharing the same bus, for him, is not a social situation.
Putnam looked forward to a challenge of the Brown decision on the basis of accumulated scientific theories and testing and an overturning of the evidence that had been put forward by Kenneth Clark and other plaintiffs in the 1950's. Thus, a high point in Putnam's activities as a publicist was his role as a friendly observer, and possibly that of a coordinator, for the defense in a school desegregation case brought by the NAACP against the Savannah/Chatham District Board of Education (known as Stellvs. the Board). The white school children of the district were designated as intervenors. This defense, acting on behalf of the children, assembled a blue-ribbon panel of the academicians who supported innate differences and/or racial separation in schools to serve as expert witnesses. Putnam recalls in Reality that among them were Wesley Critz George (histologist), Henry Garrett (psychologist) , and van den Haag (social psychologist). The testimony of the first two stressed that due to innate rather than environmental factors, Negro intelligence and scholastic performance lagged behind parallel measurable traits of white children and that the placement of both races in the same classrooms would create a disruptive learning experience disadvantageous to both races.
George, himself cited a recent work of Coon, The Origin of Races (1962), notably passages indicating innate temperamental and related biological differences between the races. In Origin, the now very prestigious author, had proposed through studies of skeletal findings of pre-sapiens variants of "home erectus" that the main racial divisions of mankind had entered the fully human homo sapiens state at separate times: the ancestors of modern Europeans much earlier--by more than 200,000 years-- than those of the Negro race, who had appeared in a sapient state approximately 30,000 years ago, making them a younger and by inference a less mature race. Van den Haag testified in a somewhat different vein, that loss of group identity in a hostile racial environment would undermine the morale of Negroes transferred to white schools. In fact, he had been arguing previously that Kenneth Clark himself, in Brown, contradicted his own evidence that segregated schooling did not damage the self-esteem of young black girls and now reiterated his findings.
The proceedings proved a swansong for what remained of a vaguely Grantian heritage in post-war America, personified in Putnam. The trial court, with a sympathetic judge, ruled in favor of the school district. But a higher court reversed the ruling, and an appeal to the Supreme Court resulted in a judgment in favor of the plaintiffs on the grounds that the Brown decision could not be reversed, since the abilities of the more gifted Negro student would be inherently squandered in a school segregated strictly according to racial origin. In any meaningful sense, Putnam's cause had ended in failure. Not necessarily in the court of public opinion, because the Northern viewpoint would for many years become "Southernized" on racial matters. If one tallied the votes for presidential candidates George Wallace and Richard Nixon, there was a majority in the country that was at odds with a Negro rights movement that was reaching a revolutionary crescendo. Nixon had moved cautiously in his first term and proved unable or possibly unwilling to really take on the Federal judiciary until possibly planning to do so in his second term which had started after a spectacular victory in 1972. But that year marked an effective end point: Nixon's presidency was terminated by Watergate and Wallace, campaigning as a Democrat, was so severely wounded in an assassination attempt that he would never again be an effective candidate for President.
Just when the post-war era ended is a matter of contention. The built-in assumptions of an American nation--indeed that there was such a legitimate nation--were eroded and were ebbing even before William J. Clinton became president. By the late 1960's-early '70's, writers such as Oliver and Ireland (nom de plume Robertson) sensed and feared this erosion and looked into a coming void. There seemed a pause during the Reagan era, but the concerns of these individuals continued to take on new meaning. These authors deserve expositions as complete as those that have been offered for Grant, who ideologically is a better precursor than he is for Putnam.
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